The important thing is not to stop questioning. Curiosity has its own reason for existing. One cannot help but be in awe when he contemplates the mysteries of eternity, of life, of the marvelous structure of reality. It is enough if one tries merely to comprehend a little of this mystery every day. Never lose a holy curiosity.
Though my curiosity is not particularly as holy, nor my intellect as sharp as Albert’s, inquisitiveness does lead to remarkable discoveries on occasion. Nothing to match the general theory of relativity, mind you.
Here’s what I mean. I was thinking about Aunt Sally’s curve and the word that a state-record rainbow trout had come from the Tuckasegee River near that monument.
Which led me to wonder about the man responsible for the Aunt Sally marker, Dr. John R. Brinkley. The most famous native son ever produced by Jackson County. Born near Beta on July 8, 1885, John endured a tough childhood. And he went on to great things.
If you don’t believe me, here’s what Joe Schwarcz, PhD., said about him…over at Quackwatch:
The remarkable events I'm going to chronicle here would likely never have unfolded, in 1917, if young Dr. John Brinkley had not been hired as house doctor at the Swift meatpacking company, located in Kansas. He was dazzled by the vigorous mating activities of the goats destined for the slaughterhouse. A couple of years later, after Brinkley had gone into private practice in Milford, Kansas, a farmer named Stittsworth came to see him. Stittsworth complained of a sagging libido. Recalling the goats' frantic antics, the doctor semi-jokingly told his patient that what he needed was some goat glands. Stittsworth quickly responded, "So, Doc, put 'em in. Transplant 'em."
Most doctors would have ignored the bizarre request, but Brinkley was not like most doctors….
No, he wasn’t. That’s Jackson County genius for you. Around the same time Einstein was concocting incomprehensible gibberish about physics, our favorite son was using his talents to accomplish something useful.
"But," you say, "we’ve all heard the story of the Goat Gland Doctor."
Well, perhaps. The exciting news is that I’ve turned up a treasure, a BANNED work from 1983 that sheds new light on the old doc.
By way of introduction, here’s a brief bio of the document’s creator:
"…born in 1953 to become an artist who believes that great art communicates to us both the glory and insignificance of TRUTH without regard for TIME and SPACE. He also believes he is made of three-colored quarks and the entire Universe will end in 10 years, so big deal."
In the days ahead, I’ll share from this amazing work. And, perhaps, there’ll be more to tell of the trophy trout taken from the Tuckasegee.
The first man to understand the hypnotic power of mass media shows how Corporations, run by people who flit through the revolving door between the SEC (Security Exchange Commission) and the CIA (Central Intelligence Agency), create Consumer need through anxious fear and control of information. This illustrated biography depicts the "The Goat Gland Doctor" and Border Blaster Radio pioneer in his meteoric rise to become the World's Greatest Quack.
Brinkley was the first Tele-evangelist with a Viagra-like cure for men; he sold colored-water medicine through 1,500 drugstores, owned the most powerful radio station in Earth's history (one million effective watts). The government created the Federal Communication Commission to control his troubling influence in the fields of Quack medicine, religion as mass-media evangelism, and modern political campaigning….
As Doc Brinkley himself might have said, STAY TUNED!